Induction cooktops use magnets to generate heat. They’re safe, precise, and efficient, but they can be intimidating to home cooks if you’re not familiar with them. We’ve checked out the best induction-compatible cookware to find what works.
Our three all-time favorite cookware sets are all compatible with induction ranges and cooktops, including the HexClad Hybrid Cookware Chef’s Package (available at HexClad) and All-Clad HA1 Hard-Anodized Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set (available at Amazon).
Reading: Best nonstick induction frying pan
If you prefer to spend less, we love the Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel 12-Piece Cookware Set (available at Amazon), which offers incredible performance on induction burners at a great value.
In general, induction cookware needs to be magnetic. Think cast iron fry pans stainless steel, and carbon steel, but not aluminum and ceramic. The best cookware for induction should evenly conduct electromagnetic energy, and sit flush against a flat cooktop.
Here are the best induction cookware sets we tested, ranked:
- HexClad Hybrid Cookware 13-Piece Chef’s Package
- All-Clad HA1 Hard-Anodized Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set
- Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel 12-Piece
- Hestan NanoBond Titanium 10-Piece Ultimate Set
- Hestan ProBond Forged Stainless Steel 10-Piece Ultimate Set
- Equal Parts The Cookware Set
- GreenPan Premiere Ceramic Nonstick 11-Piece Cookware Set
- Caraway Cookware Set
- All-Clad Brushed Stainless Steel 5-Ply Bonded 10-Piece Cookware
- Tramontina 12-Piece Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Clad Cookware Set
- Circulon Symmetry Black 11-Piece Cookware Set
- Great Jones Family Style Set
Other Induction Cookware Sets We Tested
How We Tested Induction Cookware Sets
Hi, I’m Lindsay Mattison, a trained professional chef and dinner party enthusiast. I’m the type of person that uses every single pot and pan in the house when I’m cooking dinner (and, I’ll probably dirty up all the tasting spoons and mise en place bowls, too). So I definitely understand the importance of having the right set of pots and pans to get the job done!
It wasn’t easy testing all these cookware sets (and my house was quite cluttered for a few weeks), but it was well worth it to help you find the best pots and pans sets for the value.
After researching and selecting top-rated sets for testing, we cooked a multi-component meal using each set. To function for everyday life, the pots and pans had to be sized appropriately to cook dinner for one, but we also wanted to know if you could easily cook a larger dinner (like Thanksgiving) using the set. To earn our seal of approval, at least two saucepans, one sauté pan, and a stockpot had to fit on a standard cooktop range at the same time.
Keeping that in mind, we designed the tests to evaluate performance, ease of use, and value. We seared chicken thighs in the sauté pan, tossed vegetables in the skillets, simmered sauces and cooked rice in the saucepots, and blanched vegetables in the stockpot. If the set came with nonstick gear, we fried a few eggs without oil to see how well the coating worked.
Finally, we measured any noticeable hotspots and maybe did a little taste testing to see if one set made a tastier meal than the others. In the end, none of the sets outright failed, but we did have a few favorites.
What You Should Know About Induction Cookware Sets
Although I wish it weren’t true, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all pot or pan. Each cooking task requires a specific size, from cooking small amounts of oatmeal to boiling pasta. That means that cookware sets try to anticipate your needs with a variety of pots and pans in different sizes.
Before you jump into a set, consider your cooking style: Do you usually cook for one or for a crowd? The former means you can opt for smaller cookware. Do you cook mostly soups and sauces, or are you a fan of scrambles, stir-fries, and pasta? The answer determines whether it’s more important for your set to have a selection of sauce pots or if having a large skillet.
In the end, it’s best to look for a set that has at least two small saucepots, one large stockpot, a small egg pan, and a larger skillet or sauté pan. Anything extra, I consider a bonus! Most sets come with a lid for every saucepan, stockpot, and sauté pan. Sets count these lids as extra pieces of cookware to increase the count, so the above set would have five pots and pans but would be called an 8-piece set.
While we’re on the topic, try to look for metal lids. Yes, that means you can’t see what’s going on inside the pot, but glass lids always fog up anyway! The metal lids will never drop and shatter, giving them a longer lifespan than the glass variety.
What Kind of Cookware is Best for Induction Cooktops?
Anything with a magnetic field works for induction. That means stainless steel, carbon steel, cast iron, and anything with a magnetic layer on the bottom. Ceramics and aluminum don’t work as a general rule, but you can find cookware made of those materials with a magnetic bottom for induction.
How Do I Know If My Pant Are Induction Compatible?
Holding a magnet to the bottom of your pan to see if it sticks is a quick, easy way to determine if the pan can be used with induction cooktops. Some induction-ready pans have an “induction symbol” on them, an image of a magnetic coil. Of course, magnetic cookware has existed way longer than induction cooktops, so the symbol isn’t a guarantee. It’s easier to just use a magnet.
Is an Induction Cooktop Worth It?
Induction ranges can cost a little extra. However, they offer unparalleled temperature control, they adjust to temperature changes quickly, and they cool down to safe temperatures in a flash. They also save you from gas bills or worrying about gas leaks in your kitchen.
For most people, an induction cooktop isn’t something you’d buy on a whim. But if you’re upgrading your stove or range anyway, it’s worth looking into.
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More Articles You Might Enjoy
- The Best Induction Ranges
- Induction cooking—Here’s why you should make the switch
- The Best Air Fryers
- The Best Stainless-Steel Skillets
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